Thursday, December 19, 2013

Why Chestnuts are the Most Underrated Horses - and Why They Shouldn't Be



  I was just like everyone else at one time.  I didn't particularly like Chestnuts, but I didn't particularly dislike them either.  They weren't exactly on my radar, but I would never have turned down a good horse because it was chestnut.  I've always loved Bays and of course Appaloosas.  The spots really get me, but I also have a horse crush on a nice Buckskin or Palomino.  I now own three Chestnuts (if you include the Appy), and they are really growing on me.

  Chestnuts have a seriously bad rap.  Make it a Chestnut mare and then you are really in trouble. If that is a Trakehner/Thoroughbred Chestnut mare then you might as well just give up on life (just kidding mom) I've got one of those mixes too but in the gelding model.  What is it about Chestnuts that makes people turn away, or give you that "ugh a Chestnut" look?  We all know the look, most of us have probably given that look at one time or another.

  I'm about to explore why I think Chestnuts are the most underrated horses, and why they shouldn't be.

Dark red William

Copper Penny

Liver Liam

  Chestnuts come in a variety of awesome colours; red, liver, orange, copper, sorrel, flaxen, light, dark, and everything in between.  Not only is there a beautiful array of colours, the colour shade changes slightly throughout the year just to liven things up a bit for you.  However, they will always stay that colour Chestnut, unlike a grey who will start out dappled and end up flea bitten to many horse owners dismay.  They won't bleach out in the sun like a bay or black.      

  Chestnuts are easy to name.  Red, Big Red, Red Lips, Rusty, Penny, Copper, Fire, Chilli, Tang, Cheezie, Sunny, Sundance, Fire, Rouge....the list goes on and on.  That took me less than a minute to come up with!

  Chestnuts look better with chrome than any other colour.  Ok, this is my opinion, but it's hard to disagree.  A Chestnut with four white socks and a blaze is hard to beat in the chrome factor.  Maybe a horse like Redwine could rival it, but black just doesn't do it for me personally.  

Ace chromed out.

  Chestnuts are more affordable.  For some reason Chestnuts are harder to sell.  They are less appealing to some, especially if they are a mare and you add in that "crazy Chestnut mare" factor.  This is a bonus for those horse shopping.  You can score an amazing horse for less simply because it is a Chestnut.  Think about how many people missed out on good horses because of such a silly decision.  This could be seen as a downside if you are looking to sell your horse, but let's be honest here.  Once you own a Chestnut, you are not going to be selling it!

  Chestnuts stay and look cleaner than any other colour.  Do I even have to explain the greys?  Have you ever seen a grey the morning of a show?  Covered in manure stains, needing three baths just to make it presentable.  Bays stay pretty clean but that layer of dirt and dander always seems to find it's way above the hair.  Black horses show manure, coloured horses too - much like greys.  I have found the Chestnuts always look the cleanest.

Taken straight out of the field.

  Hunter judges love Chestnuts.  I don't know why, I don't have any research other than personal experiences, but I swear hunter judges prefer Chestnuts.  That is my theory, I'm going with it.

Not totally deserved...but kicked ass.


  Chestnuts look great in cross country colours.  Blue, green, yellow, white, black, purple, teal....they look smashing in them all.

  Ready Teddy, Teddy O'Connor, Big Ben, and Rusty were Chestnuts.  Nuff' said.

  Manoir de Carnevelle, Shiraz, Toy Town and Sapphire are Chestnuts.  Nuff' said.

  Maybe I'm a bit biased.  I mean, I do have three Chestnuts now....but I really truly love them.  Would Chestnut have been the colour of choice if I built my dream horse? No, probably not....but it is now ;)

**This post is strictly tongue in cheek, although, I do not understand the colour bias some people have, afterall, a horses greatness is not determined by it's colour.**


Go blue or go home.

25 comments:

  1. You forgot to add that Haflingers are also Chestnut! :) They also show a range of colors from light golden to red to liver. Cute post, I can see how some people prefer a color, like they prefer a hair color in people, but it shouldn't be a deal breaker.

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    1. For sure! Definitely should have included the Halfies!

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  2. I've always thought chestnuts were beautiful and never really understood the bias so many people have against them. I am not particularly color biased except that I have sworn I will never own another gray horse again, too much work!! Of course my XC colors are black and red and red is perhaps the one color that doesn't look so great on chestnut. :)

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    1. Red and white were my original colours until I got a Chestnut back in the day, so I had to go blue!

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  3. I never thought chestnuts were underrated. If you think about it they are the blondes of the horse world since it takes two recessive alleles.

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    1. I was thinking something similar, like a Chestnut mare will always throw a Palomino to a Cremello. That is a plus lol

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  4. Awesome post :) I've always liked chestnuts :)

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  5. It's funny, I've always adored chestnuts but I dislike palomino's...I don't know why. Everyone told me, "oh hey, you should get a palomino since you're blonde and you'll match with your horse!" and I was like...uh, no? I agree with the chrome factor. Looove the chrome on a chestnut. And I love your chesnuts. I think Bay's get a bad rap with being "plain" and "common" but I love my Bay. :))

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    1. I know, I have heard that about Bays being plain...I have always loved Bays :)

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  6. I've never understood the chestnut dislike. I have always LOVED their look, especially chromed-out!

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  7. Love it - so so true ... i am chestnutless now but truly believe good horses are good horses no matter the colour or gender

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  8. I always thought chestnuts were pretty but I've had a lot of experience with crazy ones too. My liver chestnut pony was my favourite pony ever though.

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    1. I think I've seen pics...he was adorable!!

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  9. I would never turn down a horse beacause it is a chestnut, or a chestnut mare, or a Thoroughbred chestnut mare. I don't like stereotyping and would try out the horse first. I actually like chestnuts, especially the coppery type. Good post! Some people need to stop thinking about a certain color/breed/gender as crazy and not a good choice.

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  10. I owned a very pretty chestnut in my opinion. Brick red with light tan around his points, and I LOVED that horse. That said, I still prefer bay! I don't knwo why though, you bring up some excellent points :)

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  11. I think I might be in love with chestnut mares...I've gotten along well with every one I've come across. The one I'm riding now has four white socks, star/stripe, and is part TB (other part Holsteiner) and I ADORE her. She can be dramatic but she's sweet as can be so she is just so much fun!

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  12. Kinda reminds of the black cats getting a bad rap!

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  13. I didn't know about them before today. They are beautiful
    Lily

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  14. I mean Henry is pretty stunning.. just look at him! Chestnuts for the win!! :)

    Great post!! Hehe

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  15. Chestnuts are my favorite!! I mean, I am 2 for 2 at this point :-)

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